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Megan Barto

Megan Barto Finance Manager

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Give yourself an Unfair Advantage

I’m sure all (or at least most) people who frequent the on-line automotive forums have at least heard of the new book coming out, The Unfair Advantage. Being in a dealership myself, I knew nothing like this book existed, and I was looking forward to reading it. 

I had attended a panel with 6 of the 17 authors including, Craig Lockerd, Jerry Thibeau, Troy Spring, Tracy Myers, Marc McGurren and Brian Pasch who were answering questions and commenting on the book.

During the panel, Tracy Myers said, “The book is not a pitch-fest. It's people who are experts in their fields sharing content.” I was excited to dive in. If you’re reading this, you probably are like me and can’t stop learning. I had high hopes this book would feed my addiction to this crazy industry.

The book opens with an introduction titled, “The Fear Stops Here.” A lot of dealers (including myself at times) have fear of the unknown since the strategies in this industry change so quickly. With 17 authors, you get 17 points of view, 17 areas of expertise in one book with so many different new digital strategies, there are plenty of pages covering this new medium. 

From SEO, Direct Mail, Hiring Employees, Vehicle Merchandising, Phone Training, Video, Personal Branding, Reinsurance and Mobile just to name a few. This book is perfect for anyone in the Auto Industry who wants to get a leg up on the competition (& even some who aren’t--if you’re a marketer in any industry, this book should be on your bookshelf).

There is a lot in the book about Social Media and Digital Marketing, which is the newest facet of any dealer's marketing strategy.  Some of the things, yes I already knew (don't use link farms), but other things were akin to that "ah-ha" moment and I've already started implementing some of the strategies.  In the grand scheme of things, Social Media and Digital Marketing are relatively new creatures so it's refreshing to have multiple perspectives. Quite a few of the authors in this book are experts in digital marketing -- just different areas of it. You'd never get 17 different perspectives when working with one vendor.

One of my favorite chapters is Glen Garvin's “Technology is Here To Stay - Jump On The Bandwidth or Fall Behind ” Throughout the book, clever chapter titles like this that coax you into reading “just one more chapter."  He starts talking about how technology has evolved (I do remember the Apple IIe, Glen!) and how businesses are typically much slower to embrace technology than consumers are.  You'll have to read the book to find out what else his chapter covers.

There’s nothing here on the “Sales Process” or “Holding Gross,” each dealer has their own process, this book isn’t here to change the way you do business-- it’s here to help you improve on the current way you do business, to add some things to your arsenal to help you make sure there’s “no competition” in your area.

I wish the book would have touched more on fixed ops...but I guess they need some strategies for Volume 2.

It’s only $20 on Amazon.com (being released Thursday, September 12).   Even if you don’t take something from every chapter - I can assure you, you’ll find golden nuggets of information throughout the book which you'd be silly to NOT implement into your marketing strategies. 

Who out of the 17 different authors are you most looking forward to reading?

Jim Bell
Nice review Megan! I know that I will be ordering mine in the very near future...like a few clicks away. Thanks for the review and making my mouth water a little.
Megan Barto
Thank you :-) & I'm always happy to drive your thirst for knowledge, Jim!
Jim Bell
Knowledge is power. :)
Nancy Simmons
I just ordered the book as well Megan...Perhaps you could write for the second volume...Would be nice to see our gender represented.

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